Evan R. Steinhauser / Anchorage Daily News
22-year-old Morgan Hite of Wasilla appeared in Palmer Superior Court Wednesday to be arraigned on charges of first-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death, according to Alaska State Troopers, who assisted with the investigation and arrest on the Colorado charges. On a recent visit to family in Colorado, Hite gave birth to a child, then fled back to Alaska without the newborn boy, according to Grand Junction, Colo., police. The infant’s body was discovered hidden in a bedroom weeks after it had been killed.

An Alaska woman who killed her newborn baby by giving birth and leaving the boy in a bag at her parents’ Grand Junction home will face 16 to 24 years in prison.

Morgan Hite, 23, tearfully entered a guilty plea Monday morning to one felony count of child abuse resulting in death, a plea agreement that erases her former charge of first-degree murder and other charges of theft in a previous case.

Family members who have appeared in court for each of Hite’s appearances also shed tears as the young mother, who was in custody, entered her guilty plea.

Hite, who is the mother of another young girl, gave birth to a baby Feb. 25 while visiting her parents in Grand Junction.

A day after arriving in town, Hite delivered the baby boy in a neighbor’s bathtub, carried him in a plastic bag back to her parents’ house and stowed the newborn in a tote in a closet, according to her arrest affidavit.

Hite was arrested in Alaska in April after her parents found the child’s decomposing body.

The baby is now named Gabriel.

Hite is the mother of a girl who was 4 years old at the time of the incident. That child is in her father’s custody.

Hite faces sentencing March 19.


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